Road crashes occur almost everyday. But what fate befalls victims of these crashes? Most often, some of them are trapped, without any quick help coming to them. Some of them even die before they could be rescued by operatives of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) who often use crude instruments such as cutlass, axe and others to break the metallic car before they could bring out the victim. MIKE ODIEGWU reports to ameliorate the situation, the Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) has donated sets of Crash Victim Extractive Equipment to the Bayelsa State Command of the FRSC .
The rate at which road accidents occur on our highways has become so worrisome so much so that stakeholders, at various forums, have advocated stringent measures to curb the menace. Being one of the stakeholders, the Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) has expressed its worry about the fate of victims of road crashes in Bayelsa State. The company is concerned that each time victims are trapped in their ill-fated vehicles; it takes a lot of time for officials of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) to save them.
To tackle the problem, the SPDC recently donated sets of Crash Victim Extractive Equipment to the Bayelsa State Command of the FRSC to facilitate its race against time to save accident victims’ lives.
Representatives of the police, the fire service and special corps marshals attended a brief event where Shell released the equipment to the FRSC.
Speaking at the event, the representative of the SPDC, Mr. Kiri Obomanu said the company was worried about crude tools FRSC deploys each time an accident occurs.
Noting that the company had executed many projects in the area of road safety, Obomanu, who represented SPDC Social Investment Manager, Gloria Udo, said the crash victims equipment was essential in an emergency situation.
“Most times accidents occur and a victim is trapped in the vehicle, the road safety corps have no option than to use cutlass, axe and others to break the metallic car before they are able to bring out the victim.
“This consumes a lot of time and during that period; the victim might lose his life. In a bid to increase the chances of survival even after being involved in a terrible accident, avoiding vehicle burning and causing more harm to the victims, these equipment have been provided to help the road safety corps”, he said.
He said the SPDC identifies with everything that has to do with safety. He said the company always looked for opportunities to share its safety experience with members of the public.
He said: “Shell is a company known for anything that is synonymous with safety. This is part of our external relations with our external stakeholders. We take the knowledge we already have and the expertise we have in safety and we extend it to the general public.
“Our desire is not only for us and Shell workers to return home safely after our work, our desire is for the public to go about their daily businesses in a safe manner so that they can always return to their loved ones at the end of all their activities. So, these equipment are just to help.
“We put our efforts in prevention but where this accident or incidence happens, we try to give the victim opportunity to be able to, at least, recover or get treatments as quickly as possible.
“So, this is the equipment that can extract the person or allow the person to access medical care and hopefully the person will survive and be able to achieve his destiny”.
Receiving the equipment, the state’s Sector Commander, Mr. Igwe Lawrence, commended the SPDC for donating the life-saving equipment to the corps. He said the equipment would surely reduce the death rate arising from road accidents.
Speaking for the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Agans Irabor said the equipment would be a life saver, adding that it was the responsibility of security operatives to protect lives. He, however, urged members of the public to quickly alert law enforcement agencies any time there is a threat to life.
“This move by the SPDC is a very wonderful one. It will go a long way to save people’s lives. It is our duty to protect life and property”, he said.
In his remark, a road user, Ovielami Godswill, who represented the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) attributed major causes of accidents in the country to lack of education.
He said: “We all know that accidents occur daily. One of the major causes is lack of education. Most drivers don’t know the meaning or importance of traffic lights. They don’t know how to park their vehicles and other instructions. Then you wonder how they got their driver’s licenses.
“Therefore, we implore that there should be more orientation to avoid accidents. Having this extractive equipment has assured us that even in the case of terrible accidents, there is still hope for survival”.
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